Media Training NZ Blog

What English and Little can learn from Obama

19 January 2017
He’s always been known as a great communicator, but there’s one specific thing that Bill English and Andrew Little could both learn from the media skills of Baraka Obama. Whether it’s a media interview, a press conference or a presentation, his body language is a big reason why he is so effective. He always looks as if he wants to be there, showing passion and energy every time. A major part of this is how he expresses himself with his hands....

Why Trump's tweets should concern you

10 January 2017
Donald Trump has put many US business leaders on edge over the last few months with his attack tweets that seem to come from nowhere. Ford and Toyota have both seen their share price drop after tweets from Trump threatening border taxes for cars built offshore and sold in America. The tweets were not even totally accurate. These are just two examples and show just how damaging social media attacks can be on business and other groups. This has been...

Michelle Boag and click bait

6 January 2017
How many times have you read a headline in an online news story that looks exciting, but ends up quite misleading if you bother to click the link for more detail. This is called click bait and has the sole intention of getting you to read further. The recent controversy with Michelle Boag’s ‘Barely coffee-coloured’ comment is the latest of many examples. She made the comment in relation to a specific claim by the women accusing Peter Leitch of racism. The...

New Year's Resolution - Be ready for that possible crisis

28 December 2016
One thing that many businesses found towards the end of 2016 was that a crisis can strike out of the blue without warning. I’m obviously talking about earthquakes, but crises can take many forms. They can be the death of staff, data breaches, staff bullying accusation, embezzlement or a myriad of other possibilities. What stands out for you? Do you hold confidential information? Are you responsible for a group of people? Or is it something else that could damage your reputation...

Like Trump, now is your free publicity opportunity

21 December 2016
If you were keeping up with the news in November and early December, you will have seen how much space was taken up by the Earthquake. This is understandable because it was obviously big news. But what it also meant was that many other issues were kept off the news pages because there was only so much room. For example, there was little coverage of protests about the US Navy ship visiting New Zealand. When big news events like this happen,...

Liam Malone my media spokesperson of the year

14 December 2016
My media spokesperson of the year award has never gone to a sportsperson. That is until now. This year it goes to Paralympian star Liam Malone. Why? He clearly stood out among all sportspeople in 2016 with his ability to generate interest in his sport and give journalists fantastic sound bites and quotes to bring their stories to life. Who could forget this one. “I felt tired. I was just saying to myself 'kick it up a gear mate, your mum...

Who should be National Party leader?

7 December 2016
If there’s one thing the National Party has learnt over the past 10 years, it’s the importance of having a leader that potential voters can relate to. It’s why National has been so dominant and gave them a massive head start in the last two election campaigns. The last thing they want now is to lose that advantage. So who should be the new leader? That means the new leader has to be someone people can relate to, which mean the...

Could Trump's campaign style work in NZ?

30 November 2016
Lots of people ask me if the confrontational campaign style of Donald Trump would work for other politicians and leaders from other sectors. My answer for 99 percent of spokespeople is a resounding ‘no’. Why? There is a huge difference between running for US President and most other situations. That’s purely because this race was between two people. Trump had his share of major supporters, but all he had to do was convince voters he was a better choice than Hillary...

Quake and empathy in media interviews

23 November 2016
If there’s one piece of advice I could give to leaders who are thrust onto the media stage when crises hit, it’s to make their first message a statement of empathy for victims. After the recent earthquake, some used this well while others didn’t have the knowledge or skill to express it. The problem is that reporters will never ask you a question that requires a direct answer that focuses on empathy alone. You will be asked questions like, “What happened”?,...

Quake shows need for crisis communication plan

16 November 2016
Were you prepared to communicate with all possible stakeholders immediately after Monday’s earthquake? If not, your crisis communication plan needs a revamp. When it comes to crisis or emergency planning, most organisations have safety procedures in place, as they should. Safety should always be the number one priority when responding to an emergency. However, communication is also important. Bad communication in a crisis can threaten that safety. It can also impact badly on reputations and bottom lines. Every time there is...
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